Allow us to paint a picture: You’ve just gotten home from a hard day’s work; you’re exhausted and maybe a little stressed. All you want to do is to unwind with a nice and easy meal while you catch up on some Netflix. What’s wrong with that?
The truth is, we live in a world where being busy and distracted is our default state, so most of us are constantly preoccupied. We eat, sleep, and go about our lives with the world at our fingertips – Literally.
You have probably spent years, maybe decades, training your mind to avoid boredom at all costs. This total lack of familiarity with being present makes practicing mindfulness crazy intimidating, but it’s also what makes it so necessary! The practice of mindfulness has helped people worldwide to live more intentionally and improve their overall physical and mental health.
That’s where we come in! Let us shed some light on an easy way to incorporate mindfulness into your routine to find more calm with mindful eating.
What is mindful eating?
Mindfulness is a practice based on Zen Buddhism that people use to find calm in a busy world and sometimes even to change their eating habits. Unlike most diet trends, mindful eating has nothing to do with calories, carbohydrates, fat, or protein. This definitely isn’t the article where we tell you that you need to stop eating all those delicious things you love!
Instead, simply begin to pay attention to your food while you eat, moment by moment, without judgment. In doing this, you allow yourself a few guaranteed peaceful moments every day without needing to take more time out of your day for regular mindfulness practice.
We are mindful when we try to exist in the present moment without pesky distractions eating away at our consciousness.
A great start is eliminating distractions around the dinner table – Turn the screens off and enjoy your meal!
How can mindful eating help you?
We know, we know – this little habit seems way too simple to have any real impact. That, however, is where you would be wrong. Mindful eating has been shown to help with a whole lot of mental and physical ailments, such as:
• Eating disorders
• Heartburn and indigestion
All of this makes a lot of sense when you think about it. You’re likely to eat slower and savor your meals, so you’ll be more tuned in to your body’s signals. This will make you less likely to overeat without consciously restricting your calorie intake.
Stop dieting; start living!
Without behavior change, diets are entirely useless! Why would you choose to continue abusing your mental and physical health by feeding into diet culture when you know there’s a better way? Instead, we recommend practicing mindful eating and revolutionizing your health and quality of life.
Today’s Daily Action
The next time you sit down to eat, leave your phone in a different room, and turn the screens off!
Sit down and savor your meal while listening to your body’s natural hunger and fullness cues. Stop eating when your body’s had enough.
Bask in the knowledge that you’ve taken the time today to look after yourself and be present.
C. Nelson and S. Cromwell, “Mindful Eating: Benefits, Challenges, and Strategies,” All Current Publications, Aug. 2017, [Online]. Available: https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/extension_curall/1773N. S. Hepworth, “A Mindful Eating Group as an Adjunct to Individual Treatment for Eating Disorders: A Pilot Study,” Eating Disorders, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 6–16, Dec. 2010, doi: 10.1080/10640266.2011.533601.